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SPJ President to interview journalist whose home was raided, during on-stage Q&A at NorCal chapter event


J. Alex Tarquinio, SPJ National President, 212-283-0843, atarquinio@spj.org
Jennifer Royer, SPJ Director of Communications and Marketing, 317-361-4134, jroyer@spj.org

INDIANAPOLIS – Society of Professional Journalists National President J. Alex Tarquinio will lead a Q&A with journalist Bryan Carmody on Tuesday during an SPJ NorCal chapter event.

Carmody is the San Francisco journalist whose home was raided by police and the FBI in May.

Journalists and members of the public are invited to a 6 p.m. PDT mixer and the program, which begins at 6:30 p.m. PDT, at Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism in San Francisco, 44 Montgomery St. RSVPs are required.

The on-stage Q&A will include First Amendment attorney Tom Burke.

Carmody’s home and newsroom were raided by San Francisco police and the FBI in April. Seeking to uncover Carmody’s confidential source who allegedly leaked a police report around the death of San Francisco’s public defender, police came to Carmody’s door with a sledge hammer, kept him in handcuffs and confiscated tens of thousands of dollars in video reporting equipment and computers.

SPJ and other press freedom advocates lambasted San Francisco government for the allegedly illegal act and described it as an obvious violation of California’s Shield Law, which enshrines journalist protections against warrant search and seizure.

Tarquinio will moderate the discussion about the raid and ongoing legal fight with Burke and Carmody days before they are due back in court. SPJ is dedicated to defending press freedoms, and throughout Carmody's case, the SPJ NorCal chapter has aggressively pursued California Shield Law protections for Carmody.

SPJ and SPJ NorCal — in collaboration with the First Amendment Coalition and Reporters Committee for Freedom of The Press, and represented by Duffy Carolan of Jassy Vick Carolan and SPJ NorCal Freedom of Information Committee Co-Chair Aaron Field — filed a motion to unseal the materials that San Francisco police presented in court to obtain search warrants against Carmody.

SPJ and SPJ NorCal also joined a court brief supporting Carmody's motion to quash the search warrants. The motion to unseal has already unearthed important information, and the motion to quash has been granted as to four out of the five warrants. Both motions are scheduled to be heard as to the fifth warrant on Aug. 16.

For more information about the event email SPJ NorCal.

SPJ promotes the free flow of information vital to informing citizens; works to inspire and educate the next generation of journalists; and fights to protect First Amendment guarantees of freedom of speech and press. Support excellent journalism and fight for your right to know.
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